Vince Staples : 'FM!'

The Californian rapper's third album doesn't reach the heights of his prior releases.

What probably comes down to a mix of energetic live performances, audacious online rants or general talent, Vince Staples seems to be one of the few new-wave rappers that’ll still be around in a few years to come. Unfortunately however this third release fails to hit the hype he’s built for himself.
Opening track ‘Feels Like Summer’ supposedly complements the beach-set album artwork, but there’s nothing very summery about it. The track itself makes for a disappointing start with a fairly generic synth-heavy beat behind it.
Bar the chorus, ‘Outside!’ showcases some better lyrical work but again, the beat is nothing we haven’t heard a million times since 2001. Thankfully things pick up with ‘Don’t Get Chipped’, which has smoother flow and Staples’ signature tongue-in-cheek swagger oozing throughout.
Excluding interludes and skits the album is very brief, with Staples only rapping on eight tracks total. The interludes in question are nothing more than snippets from fellow rappers, Tyga and Earl Sweatshirt, which may have intended to be genuine appreciation but feels more like sneaky cross-promotion, meanwhile ‘FUN!’ is actually fun and even better with the comical music video. All in all this album is short on quantity and unfortunately also quality; leaving us all still waiting on a decent rap release in 2018.